The Jonas Brothers helped launch Scriber, a subscription-based media company geared toward established creators and celebrities, debuting today. Scriber enables fans to text a number to subscribe and receive exclusive content sent to their phone.
Launching today with backing from teen singing sensations turned philanthropists Joe, Kevin, and Nick Jonas, Scriber is a subscription-based company for established entertainment figures. With Scriber, creators can post a phone number for fans to text to subscribe (through Apple Pay or Stripe) and receive exclusive content sent to their phones.
Creators on Scriber retain the rights to the content they upload. The platform gives each subscriber a unique link to view uploads to protect the material from leaking, meaning that if a user shares a link, Scriber can quickly determine the source of the leak. How well this will protect creators’ content in practice remains to be seen.
Scriber’s CEO, former journalist Brian Goldsmith, provided most of the company’s startup capital. In an interview with Axios, Goldsmith said that he hopes celebrities he partners with will use the platform to raise money for philanthropy. The Jonas Brothers have stated they plan to donate about half of their earnings to causes about which they’re passionate.
Goldsmith adds that Scriber plans to target the top 1-5% of a celebrity’s existing fanbase.
“You’re targeting the little community of super fans who want either more of what you’re already doing or they want to see something that only subscribers will get to see,” says Goldsmith.
Because Scriber is not an app, the platform isn’t required to pay fees to Apple or Google, which allows it to keep costs down; creators pay Scriber $1 per subscriber per month and cover Stripe’s 2.9% processing fee. Scriber’s subscription price for fans launched at $4.99 a month, although the service is only available in the US for now.
App store fees have consistently remained a point of contention for creator-focused startups, such as Fanhouse, which implemented a coin system for fans to purchase and redeem to subscribe to creators, circumventing Apple’s 30% cut. Fans can still pay through the app, but Fanhouse will charge extra to cover the fees.
The Jonas Brothers have previously invested in other startups, such as social food app Snackpass and celebrity-backed soda company OLIPOP. Without his brothers, Kevin Jonas launched the (now-defunct) food app Yood and an influencer marketing company called The Blu Market.